How often have you had the chance to experience an ancient civilization’s culture? All throughout our history, the human race has always managed to live with what they had, except for now. Today, we’ve gone a step further by creating things that will improve the quality of our lives. In a world of high technology, we’ve often forgotten the way our race once lived and the foundations of our culture.
It can be a revelation to step back in time and explore the lives of ancient civilizations and the way they interacted with their natural surroundings. What better way to do this than to explore Machu Picchu, otherwise known as the Lost City of the Incas.
About Machu Picchu
Located 2,340 meters above sea level in the Cusco Region of the Machupicchu District in Peru, Machu Picchu is an Incan estate that was built during the 1450s but abandoned about a century later. Although it is often referred to as a “Lost City”, it was actually anything but lost. In fact, the estate was well known to the Incan civilization.
Although Machu Picchu was a popular landmark for the Incans, it was hidden to the rest of the world. In 1911, American historian Hiram Bingham introduced the world to the site. Since then, it has been a major tourist attraction. Millions of people from all over the world have trekked to the site to experience the culture of a civilization that very few people have heard about.
How to Get There
Hidden high in the mountains of Peru, travelling to the site is an adventure in itself, especially for those who have spent most of their lives at sea level. Spending some time at a location thousands of meters above sea level can be a harrowing experience if you’re not prepared.
You will first need to fly into Lima and then on to Cusco. After that you’ll need to take a train to Aguas Calientes, a town just below the site of Machu Picchu. You’ll need to spend a night at Aguas Calientes to build your strength for the following day’s activities, which can be strenuous.
From Aguas Calientes, you can take a bus to Machu Picchu or go on a more scenic hike. If you choose to hike, be prepared to spend 90 minutes on a steep trail. If you intend to spend a bit more time at the site, you’ll probably decide to leave Aguas Calientes early in the morning. However, you might want to talk to the locals first to know if the site is visible early morning. There are times when Machu Picchu is covered in a thin layer of fog and you might not be able to enjoy part of your visit.
If you’re not used to high altitudes, you’ll need to prepare for altitude sickness. Visiting Machu Picchu is definitely a memorable experience, but it’s best if you remember the beauty of the site instead of being sick for a couple of days. Don’t over exert yourself at the high altitude and remember to drink plenty of water while you’re there.